Jackson School Mentor Program




The Jackson School Mentor Program was initiated in 2011. The mission of the program is to enrich and support the professional goals of undergraduate students at the Jackson School of International Studies. The Jackson School Mentor Program matches each student with a mentor (either an alumni or friend of the Jackson School) based on similar academic and professional interests.

Our goal is to assist students in their transition from their academic to their professional life and provide them with a positive role model who has gone through similar experiences and can encourage the student to explore their career aspirations. Through friendship and guidance, mentors and mentees develop a professional relationship that supports the student’s efforts toward a successful and productive transition through graduation and beyond.


Why Become a Mentor?

Mentoring a Jackson School student is rewarding on many levels. Interacting with students prompts mentors to reflect on their own careers and to take stock. As they summarize their years of experience, they come to realize and value just how much they’ve learned and how much they have to offer. But we hope our mentors are also re-invigorated as they experience the passion, energy and fresh perspective of our students.

The mentor experience is an opportunity for mentors to put their own vision, energy and creativity to work, making an important difference in another student's life. Mentors enjoy the personal satisfaction of contributing to a student's growth and success, as well as giving back to the Jackson School community. They also enjoy the stimulation and challenge of inspiring, encouraging, and supporting their mentees, contributing to their professional and personal development.

Time Commitment for Mentors

The Jackson School Mentor Program runs from October to April every year. Students sign up in October and, after selecting their mentors, are asked to arrange to meet/communicate with their mentors at least once per quarter for the duration of the program. Mentors outside of the Seattle area who cannot meet in person can choose a preferred method of communication (phone/Skype/etc).

At the end of the program in April, we hold a reception for the Seattle-based Mentor Program participants to meet and share their stories and experiences.



How Do I Become a Mentor?

All Jackson School Alumni and Friends are invited to be mentors, no matter where they are located.

If you are interested in becoming a mentor, please express your interest in participating by submitting this short survey:

Jackson School Mentor Program Mentor Interest Form

You will then be contacted by the Mentor Program Coordinator with more information as we begin organizing the program for the upcoming academic year.

Undergraduate students are matched with mentors based on factors such as course of study, career interests, and extracurricular interests. Participating students submit their survey of interest in May, and select their preferences for their mentor assignment in October after reviewing mentor biographies.

Must I be a Jackson School Alumni in order to be a Mentor?

We welcome friends of the Jackson School who are interested in volunteering their time and sharing their experiences with JSIS students who might be interested in their career field.

Mentor Testimonials

“The Jackson School mentorship program connected me with rising International Studies scholars. It has been rewarding to learn about their experience at the Jackson School and provide them with guidance on how to navigate the current employment environment. This has been a great way to re-establish my ties with the School!” - Kailani Chin-Hidano (BA 2002), Director of Operations and Human Resources, The National Bureau of Asian Research

“As a former student, I wish I had known more about opportunities in the Federal government. I serve as a mentor now to encourage and assist current students interested in public service careers.” - Jennifer Lee (BA 2006), Washington DC


2012 Mentor Program Reception

Jackson School Advising
University of Washington
111 Thomson Hall
Box 353650
Seattle, WA 98195
(206) 543-6001 phone
(206) 685-0668 fax

Jackson School
Alumni Relations
University of Washington
124 Thomson Hall
Box 353650
Seattle, WA 98195
(206) 543-0176 phone
(206) 685-0668 fax